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Investment opportunity for Cebuanos: A Turkish lifestyle studio

Turkish businessman Irfan Karabulut (center) shows a Turkish mosaic table lamp in an interview with the media Friday, Oct. 14, 2022. Other photos are from ATA Organic's FB page.

Cebuanos will soon get to experience Turkish culture and learn the art of making decorative mosaic lamps and candle holders with bright geometric patterns of colored glass and beads.

Turkish businessman Irfan Karabulut is seeking local partners who are willing to put up a lifestyle studio where Cebuanos can spend some “me” time, unleash their creativity, and relieve stress while learning Turkish arts and crafts.

Aside from making the popular mosaic lamps, Karabulut plans to also introduce tufting, a textile weaving method, and painting. Farm-to-table businesses focusing on organic food items are also in the works.

Karabulut, president and CEO of Hong Kong-based organic food producer Pacific Economic Centre Ltd., said he wants to promote a new lifestyle concept to Cebuanos.

“Now, people are struggling with what they should do. Many young people are not feeling happy. We’re offering something that people can do to become self-confident, (achieve) self-satisfaction, and expand their culture (experiences),” he said in an interview.

“This is not (a) business. This is a lifestyle we’re proposing… We want people to focus on themselves and on something that can make them happy,” he added.

He said they will bring in the artisans who would teach the craft and an initial €500,000 worth of raw materials. The raw materials for the mosaic table lamp include tiny pieces of colored glass and beads in different shapes, bronze or brass components, and a clear fiberglass base on which the glass and beads are arranged in geometric patterns.

Ideal studio

An ideal lifestyle studio would have a floor area of 200 to 400 sq.m. It should be situated on a property with a spa-like ambiance to promote relaxation. There will be Turkish delights and unlimited coffee for the clients.

Each masterclass will cost between P3,000 and P7,000, and will last for two to three hours. The client gets to bring home the finished mosaic table lamp, candle holder, or whatever item he/she learned to make.

Karabulut said he’s in talks with potential partners in Cebu and Metro Manila. He hoped to begin conducting a masterclass as soon as possible and train locals on these Turkish arts and crafts to localize the operations.

Over the last four years, Karabulut said he has forged tie-ups with multiple partners in 21 countries, including Canada, Australia, China, and Korea, where similar lifestyle studios are already operating. (MTVI/Ventures Cebu)

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